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  1. Build a Democratic firewall against Trump’s agenda.

    May 27, 2018 by admin

    Friends – Two Democratic champions now officially have general election opponents. In Pennsylvania, Gov. Tom Wolf has led the charge for voting rights, passing online voter registration and reversing GOP gerrymandering. And in Oregon, Gov. Kate Brown has helped working families by raising the minimum wage and passing guaranteed paid sick leave.

    Now Republicans are gearing up to spend millions to defeat Democratic governors like these and install extremists who will side with Trump every time. That’s why we need your help.
    To win critical races like these, we need 89 Democrats in NC to donate by MIDNIGHT tomorrow. Races like this are so important that a group of donors will DOUBLE all gifts to help launch winning grassroots campaigns. Give $3 now to elect more Democratic governors and build a Democratic firewall against Trump’s agenda.


  2. Come take the walking tour today!

    May 26, 2018 by admin

    Kenilworth Art Studio Tour is Today & Tomorrow !!
    10AM – 5PM

    Come out today and tomorrow.
    There are 16 artists in 10 studios scattered around the neighborhood.
    Signs are out directing motorists to the studios.

    For Map and Information go to:
    kenilworthartists.org


  3. Are we becoming just an anti-trump party?

    May 26, 2018 by admin

    Are we going let the Progressive Democrats only run a negative campaign against Trump or are we going to demand a positive campaign; one that lets America know what Progressive Democrats believe America needs ? Progressive Democrats can insist that the government provide healthcare for all, living wages for workers, and an economy that benefits all of us not just the rich. One way to accomplish this is with massive demonstrations. Another way is to learn about the candidates, pick those you like, and then send them money for their campaigns. You can also volunteer to help the campaigns of those you support by knocking on doors in your neighborhood and writing letters to the editor of your local paper. Always we citizens can help by working at the polls on election day.

    Dick Warren


  4. Elizabeth Warren is on our side

    May 25, 2018 by admin

    Richard,

    Almost 20 years ago – early in the fall term of 1999 – I’d been covering an especially tough topic in my bankruptcy class.

    You know that deer-in-the-headlights look on a CEO’s face when they can’t answer a question in a Senate hearing? That was my whole room of students that day.

    A few students had looked a little shaken when they left class, so I wasn’t surprised when one of them stopped by my office later in the day. “Hi, I’m Katie Porter. You were really hard on me today.” I thought she was about to start complaining about how tough the work was, but she didn’t pause a beat. Instead, she said, “and I just wanted to come by to say please keep it up. I want to learn this, so don’t let up on me.”Take Action!

    Katie and me at her law school graduation in 2001

    I didn’t let up –- and neither did Katie. Katie became an expert in the complex law of bankruptcy, and we worked together for years studying why millions of American families were in so much financial trouble. She became a law professor herself out in California –- and in the aftermath of the 2008 economic crisis, California Attorney General Kamala Harris appointed her to a job fighting to hold the big banks accountable and help Californians who lost their homes.

    Several months ago, Katie invited me to breakfast. After we caught up on the news about her kids, she told me she wanted to pour everything she had into making a difference for people. Katie is running for Congress in 2018 — and my friends at Democracy for America are behind her 100%.

    I trust Katie to fight for working families. I’m fighting for Katie, along with DFA, and I hope you will, too. Please chip in to help Katie’s campaign –- even $5 could make a huge difference before her primary on June 5.

    Katie lives in Orange County, California –- in a district that Hillary Clinton won by five points last November. The Republican Congresswoman who holds that seat has voted with Donald Trump 98.7% of the time -– including votes to repeal health care for millions of Americans, defund Planned Parenthood, and gut the rules on Wall Street.

    Sending Katie to Congress in this winnable district would put us one seat closer to taking back the House in 2018. And Katie will give us another powerful voice in Washington who will stand up to the big banks and powerful corporations and fight for women, students, seniors, immigrants, and working people in her district and all across this country.

    I’ve seen Katie’s commitment and grit up close and personal. I’ve seen her determination to tell the story of a rigged game. And I’ve seen her put it all on the line to fight for what she believes in.

    Katie has been my partner in these fights for years — and she’ll make a terrific partner in Congress. Please donate to Katie’s campaign now — and help us take back the House in 2018.

    Thanks for being a part of this,

    Elizabeth


  5. Facing South’s investigative reporting today

    May 25, 2018 by admin

    May 25, 2018

    SOUTHERN NEWS AND TRENDS
    SPECIAL REPORT – The disaster of Medicaid work requirements
    INSTITUTE INDEX – Teachers rise up in North Carolina

    SOUTHERN NEWS AND TRENDS

    NEW CHALLENGES FOR THE DISPUTED ATLANTIC COAST PIPELINE: A key permit voided. An environmental justice complaint. Accusations of fraud. In recent weeks, Dominion and Duke Energy’s proposed pipeline to carry fracked gas from West Virginia at least as far south as North Carolina has faced several setbacks. But the developers plan on moving ahead with the $6.5 billion project anyway — and they’re investing in creating a political climate favorable to those plans. (5/24/2018)

    SECRET-MONEY COURTS GROUP ACCUSED OF LIBEL IN ARKANSAS: An Arkansas judge blocked an election ad by the conservative Judicial Crisis Network attacking a state Supreme Court judge, citing libel concerns. If the group, which spends millions to influence state and federal courts, appeals to the U.S. Supreme Court, its spending would present an ethical dilemma for Justice Neil Gorsuch. (5/18/2018)

    VOICES: ANSWERING RAMADAN’S CALL TO RADICAL EMPATHY: Speaking at a protest in North Carolina this week as part of the new Poor People’s Campaign, Zainab Baloch juxtaposed her Islamic faith tradition’s teachings about empathy with the violence and poverty experienced by her fellow Muslim Americans and North Carolinians. (5/22/2018)

    STACY ABRAMS MAKES HISTORY: The progressive former Georgia state House minority leader resoundingly won the Democratic primary this week to become the first black woman nominated for governor in Georgia history. If she wins, she’ll be the first black woman governor in U.S. history. (5/23/2018)

    SPECIAL REPORT – Medicaid work requirements would worsen South’s health care crisis

    By Rebekah Barber

    “How many more babies? How many more children?”

    Those are the questions Callie Greer tearfully asked earlier this month at the Washington, D.C., launch of the 40 Days of Action for the Poor People’s Campaign: A National Call for Moral Revival, held the day after Mother’s Day. Her own daughter, Venus, died of stage 4 breast cancer in Alabama because the state had refused to expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act and she could not get treatment until it was too late.

    Every year, thousands of people like Venus die because they don’t have insurance and thus lack access to health care. It’s a problem people living in the South know too well. Because nine out of the 13 Southern states refused to expand Medicaid, the region is home to 90 percent of Americans who fall into the health care coverage gap — not wealthy enough to afford private insurance but not qualified for the public health insurance program for the poor and disabled.

    Now the Trump administration wants to make it even more difficult for Americans to access Medicaid. In January, the administration sent a letter to state Medicaid directors calling for work requirements as a condition of Medicaid eligibility. Last month President Trump doubled down on his stance by issuing an executive order that aims to force citizens who do not meet certain work requirements off Medicaid, food assistance, and other safety-net programs.

    Trump claims the policy would decrease poverty and provide work opportunities. But the majority of adult Medicaid beneficiaries are already working, though many are forced into part-time work by job-market limitations. And if they don’t work, it is generally for good reason: because they have physical disabilities that leave them incapable of working, or are the caretakers of those with disabilities, or struggle with mental illnesses that limit their ability to work consistently, or are part of the homeless population that faces enormous barriers to obtaining employment.

    Even though experts say Medicaid work requirements will create more problems than solutions, two Southern states — Arkansas and Kentucky — have already been granted federal approval to begin implementing them. These states, among the nation’s poorest, expanded Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act, but the work requirements are expected to push thousands of residents into the coverage gap.

    Arkansas’s work requirement is set to take effect on June 1 and will apply only to the 280,000 state residents who received health insurance through Medicaid expansion. Under the policy, Medicaid enrollees will be required to meet an 80-hour monthly work requirement. If they are unable to meet the requirement for three months during the year, they will be locked out of Medicaid until the following year. And because the plan will require enrollees to report work hours through an online portal, some may lose coverage not because they failed to meet the work requirements but simply because they lack the internet access to prove it.

    Kentucky’s work requirement is set to take effect in July. But 15 residents have filed a class-action lawsuit to challenge the legality of the plan, which would require all Medicaid enrollees — not just those covered under the Medicaid expansion — to complete 80 monthly hours of employment, education, job skills training, or community service. If implemented, the plan is estimated to save the state over $2.4 billion because thousands will be kicked off the Medicaid rolls.

    Kentucky’s plan has raised questions about disproportionate racial impacts. The state will first impose the work requirement in northern Kentucky, which includes Jefferson County — the county with the largest Black population in the state. That means those most affected will be poor African Americans. But eight counties in rural southeastern Kentucky with high rates of unemployment — and where whites make up over 90 percent of the population — will be exempt from the work requirement. George Washington University health law professor Sara Rosenbaum called it “a version of racial redlining.”

    A recent analysis by the Center for Budget and Policy Priorities (CBPP) found that even Medicaid recipients who regularly work could be at risk of losing coverag e. That’s because people working low-wage jobs are more likely to have irregular working hours or gaps in their employment. CBPP estimates that one in four people who work enough hours over the course of a year to satisfy Kentucky’s work requirements could still have at least one month where they fall below the 80-hour monthly requirement and thus risk losing coverage.

    Besides Arkansas and Kentucky, Indiana and New Hampshire have also had Medicaid work requirements approved by the Trump administration. Several other states have proposals pending, including Mississippi — which unlike Arkansas and Kentucky did not expand Medicaid under the Affordable Care Act. Thus a single parent in Mississippi can make no more than a meager $227 a month to qualify for Medicaid.

    Earlier this month, Seema Verma, the administrator for the federal Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services, cautioned Medicaid non-expansion states against imposing work requirements over concerns about coverage loss, while a legal filing by the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services in the Kentucky lawsuit said the Trump administration views work requirements as an option only for adults in expansion states. If Mississippi’s plan is approved, more than 20,000 Mississippians could lose their Medicaid, with women and African Americans most affected.

    Meanwhile, Mississippi is not the only Southern non-expansion state considering Medicaid work requirements. Last month, Tennessee Gov. Bill Haslam announced plans to sign a work requirement bill that would cause an estimated 22,300 citizens to lose their insurance. And in North Carolina, Republican state lawmakers are currently negotiating ways to write a Medicaid work requirement program into the state budget now under consideration. If implemented, the policy would affect about 60,000 state residents. The federal government would have to approve the states’ plans before they could take effect.

    (To comment on or to share this story, click here. The Kaiser Family Foundation map shows approved and pending state proposals to impose Medicaid work requirements; for an interactive version, click here.)

    INSTITUTE INDEX – The teacher uprising comes to North Carolina

    Rank of the May 16 teacher march in Raleigh, North Carolina, among the capital city’s largest marches ever, part of a recent wave of teacher uprisings that have won policy changes in states including Kentucky and West Virginia: 1

    Estimated number of teachers and allies who took part in the “March for Students and Rally for Respect” organized by the N.C. Association of Educators (NCAE) to coincide with the opening day of the 2018 legislative session: between 19,000 and 30,000

    Number of North Carolina school districts that canceled classes that day because so many teachers intended to take off work to march: at least 42

    Among the NCAE’s top legislative priorities, rank of raising per-pupil spending: 1

    National average for per-pupil spending in 2017: $12,998

    Average in the 13 Southern states*: $11,178

    Average in North Carolina, which ranks 41st among the states: $10,259

    Rank of addressing teacher pay among the NCAE’s top priorities: 2

    Average public teacher salary nationally in 2017: $59,660

    In North Carolina, putting it at 37th among the states, up from 47th four years ago because of a series of pay hikes: $49,970

    Average teacher pay in the South: $49,468

    In Mississippi, which ranks last nationally: $42,925

    Average amount of their own money public school teachers spend annually on classroom supplies: $479

    Average spent by teachers working in high-poverty schools: $554

    Under a proposal put forth recently by North Carolina Gov. Roy Cooper (D), number of years it would take his state to reach the national average for teacher pay: 4

    Average percent raise North Carolina’s Republican legislative leaders want to give teachers this year, rejecting calls to bring pay levels up to the national average: 6

    Percent of the North Carolina legislature facing re-election this year, which was noted by the protesting teachers, who chanted outside the legislative chamber, “Remember, remember, we vote in November”: 100

    * Facing South counts among the Southern states Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia.

    (Click on figure to go to source. To comment on or to share this index, click here. Photo from the NCAE Facebook page.)
    Support Facing South’s investigative reporting today


  6. we need to pass the Net Neutrality

    May 25, 2018 by admin

    This week we held a call to discuss a new campaign that Free Press Action Fund is launching to secure the votes we need to pass the Net Neutrality CRA through the House of Representatives this summer.

    Unfortunately, Net Neutrality opponents showed up to the call, and they attempted to derail the conversation by using toxic and hateful language and tactics. These trolls also tried to disrupt a recent webinar we co-hosted with FCC Commissioner Clyburn by hurling slurs and hateful language in the chat.

    Let us be clear: Free Press does not tolerate racism, sexism or any other form of bigotry and hatred.

    If you aren’t OK with that, there’s an unsubscribe button at the bottom of this email.

    People seeking to disrupt our work, discourage participation and challenge social-justice activism have always been there — and in fact many are paid to disrupt our work. But we will not be deterred.

    The other night was a prime example of our opponents seeking to interfere with our volunteer time and discourage our members’ participation. But we’re not going to let Net Neutrality detractors stop our momentum.

    It’s clear these attacks are attempts to silence the voices of people of color, queer people and other marginalized communities. Net Neutrality opponents are showing up because they know we’re on the path to victory.

    Free Press was created to give people a voice in the crucial decisions that shape our media. Our vision for the future of our media and technology system is about liberation.

    That includes media that is by and for community members, not corporations. It’s a place for complexity, nuance and diversity, not stereotypes.

    We’re fighting for media that helps us connect to news and information at the local level. Media that is by and for everyday people. Media that makes space for critical connections and joy. Media that helps us make informed decisions about local issues. Media that helps us move together, create together, be together and shape policies together for our communities that improve the lives of everyone. Media that protects our privacy and safety.

    Imagine an inclusive, racially diverse media and technology system that represents our families and communities at all levels.

    With you by our side we can make that vision a reality.

    Onward to victory,

    The Free Press team: Adam, Alicia, Alison, Amy K., Amy M., Brandon, Candace, Carrie, Christina, Collette, Craig, Dana, Derek, Diego, Dutch, Fiona, Gaurav, Heather, James, Jessica, Joseph, Kimberly, Leo, Lucia, Mary Alice, Matt, Michael, Mike, Misty, Nilda, O’neil, Sandra, Sara, Stefan, Timothy and Yesenia
    freepress.net


  7. FRENCH BROAD FOOD CO+OP ANNUAL OWNER’S MEETING

    May 25, 2018 by admin

    You are invited to the following event:

    FRENCH BROAD FOOD CO+OP ANNUAL OWNER’S MEETING
    Event to be held at the following time, date, and location:

    Monday, June 4, 2018 from 6:00 PM to 8:00 PM (EDT)

    YMI Cultural Center
    20-44 Eagle Street
    Asheville, NC 28801

    View Map
    Attend Event
    Share:
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    Join the French Broad Food Co+op Owners, Staff & Board of Directors for our Annual Owner’s Meeting.

    Snack on light appetizers & snacks, Sip on our Co+op Exclusive Riojana WInes & Sample Equal Exchange Co+op Chocolates, Coffees & Teas.

    See how YOUR ONE VOICE & ONE VOTE make a DIFFERENCE in your co+operative co+mmunity.

    ~Hear GM Report from General Manager Bobby Sullivan

    ~Participate in small group discussions about the future of the Co+op.

    ~Meet Candidates for this year’s board elections.

    ~Learn about the proposed bylaws change to broaden & deepen our anti-discrimination standards

    AND

    ~Don’t miss our FIRST ANNUAL OWNER AWARDS!

    See you there.

    RSVP & YOU WILL BE ENTERED IN A RAFFLE FOR A FREE BASKET FULL OF CO+OP GOODIES, $150 VALUE.

    MUST BE AN ACTIVE OWNER TO ATTEND MEETING & VOTE FOR BOARD OF DIRECTORS & BYLAW CHANGES.

    Share this event on Facebook and Twitter. We hope you can make it!Cheers,French Broad Food Co+op


  8. Rep. Susan Fisher Buncombe County District 114 susanf@ncleg.net

    May 25, 2018 by admin

    image001.jpg
    The Raleigh Report

    Rep. Susan Fisher
    Buncombe County
    District 114
    susanf@ncleg.net

    image002.jpg
    image003.jpg

    May 25, 2018

    In Raleigh

    This week we saw the beginnings of budget shenanigans never before seen in modern North Carolina history. Keep in mind that the State Budget is a bill that spends $24 billion of your money on things we all care about – schools, transportation, public safety, and health care and other human services. It’s a big deal. House Republican leaders have announced that the State Budget has been negotiated behind closed doors, with no public input, no input from legislative Democrats, and only a modicum of input from most members of the Republican caucus. The $24 billion spending plan will rolled out next week and it will be voted up or down – without any chance for changes or amendments.

    What is in the $24 billion State Budget? Only a few dozen know, but it will be the law of the land in the next week or two and we won’t know the real impact on our schools, public safety, clean water/air, and health care for until much later.

    For the first time in modern NC history, lawmakers won’t allow changes to budget
    The News & Observer
    GOP heading to finalize budget likely without amendments
    Associated Press
    GOP seeks to prohibit amendments to proposed state budget
    WRAL
    Democrats, Others Shut Out Of State Budget Process
    WUNC
    Do we even need a legislature?
    Richmond County Daily Journal (Tom Campbell column)

    Teacher Pay Will Lag Behind Governor Cooper’s Proposal

    Legislative leaders stated in a press conference that they will not build upon the existing teacher pay package in the budget, even though the proposal leaves many veteran teachers with no raise at all. North Carolina trails the national average in teacher pay by nearly $10,000 and we trail our neighbors in South Carolina, Virginia, Tennessee, and Georgia. The best way to get to the national average are sustained raises, year-after-year, for all teachers. Governor Cooper proposed a plan to do that by freezing planned tax cuts for corporations and personal incomes over $200,000. His plan would give an average teacher pay raise of over 8% and no teacher would receive less than 5%.

    Budget Plan to Clean Up Air and Water from Contaminants Like GenX Falls Short

    Governor Cooper’s budget proposed $14.6 million to give state agencies the resources and personnel to monitor and protect air and drinking water and hold polluters accountable. This proposal is supported by environmental experts across the State. Legislative leaders are proposing new requirements on the Governor’s clean air and clean water team that will add hurdles to his ability to close a facility that is actively polluting. Additionally, they only invest $1 million clean air and clean water programs at the Department of Environmental Quality, far short of what the department needs to properly serve you.

    New GenX Bills Prompt Enforcement Worries Coastal Review Online

    General Assembly Unlikely to Act on Real School and Gun Safety Proposals

    How do we make our schools and public places safer? We can make progress by enacting common-sense gun safety laws while we also invest resources in critical school safety and youth mental health programs. Governor Cooper put forward a $130 million plan to get us on the right path. Legislative leaders are promoting a plan that invests $28 million, with the hope that the federal government will provide more later. Governor Cooper’s plan would invest in: public safety upgrades at educational buildings and additional resources for school nurses, psychologists, social workers, school resource officers, and youth mental health. Meanwhile, common sense gun safety reforms have been introduced, and continue to be introduced, but have yet to receive a single legislative hearing, either last year or this year.

    I have co-sponsored HB 976 which would create extreme risk protection orders. These types of protection orders work well in other states and have passed in those states with strong bipartisan support. They are similar to domestic violence protection orders. A person with first-hand knowledge of someone with access to a firearm behaving in a threatening manner to himself or others could petition a district court judge for a restraining order. If an order is granted, law enforcement would temporarily remove any weapons and the judge would schedule a hearing within 10 business days to give the person and others an opportunity to discuss whether to continue the removal for up to a year.
    NC Democrat pitches ‘red flag’ gun law. In less than a day, it goes to where bills die.
    The News & Observer
    NC Republicans propose $35 million for school safety. Democrats want much more.
    The News & Observer
    Editorial; NC needs a red-flag law to stem gun violence caused by mental distress
    The News & Observer

    In the Media

    CMS report blasts plan to let towns open charter schools: ‘A nightmare for taxpayers’
    Charlotte Observer
    Teacher March Brought Dialogue, But Will It Bring Solutions?
    The Mountaineer (Colin Campbell column)
    Attorney Gen. Josh Stein sues opioid manufacturer over Medicaid concerns
    Spectrum News Charlotte
    We can fight opioid abuse by expanding Medicaid
    The News & Observer op-ed
    Governor talks schools, innovation during community college visit
    HickoryRecord.com
    NC Dems Renew Fight For $15
    WUNC
    Teachers take to the streets: WNC teachers demand more money for public education
    Smoky Mountain News

    I hope you will take time to remember the Americans who lost their lives fighting for our country this Memorial Day. Thank you for your continued interest in state government. I hope you will contact me if I can be of help.

    Keep in touch,

    image004.jpg


  9. Jim Dean, Chair Democracy for America

    May 24, 2018 by admin

    It sure feels great to have so much to celebrate, doesn’t it?

    As Alyssa Milano shared with DFA members last night, the historic victory by Stacey Abrams in Georgia is profound — and it could be a preview of what transformative DFA-endorsed candidates like her can do if we step up today.

    Now is the time to show your support. Help DFA elect more candidates like Stacey Abrams, who can expand the electorate and defeat Trump Republicans this November. Chip in $3 now to build this beautiful blue wave.

    Here’s what happened in two of Democracy for America’s most important targeted races last night:

    Stacey Abrams won her gubernatorial primary in Georgia in an absolute landslide. Stacey won the hearts of DFA members back in May of 2017, BEFORE she had even announced her candidacy, and DFA members made tens of thousands of calls to support her. Democratic turnout in Georgia increased by a whopping 50% while GOP turnout stalled, a trend that could give Stacey the chance to make history as the first Black woman governor in our nation’s history this November.
    DFA-backed congressional candidate Gina Ortiz Jones won her runoff election in Texas handily, making her even more likely to become the first lesbian, Iraq War vet and Filipina-American to ever represent the Lone Star State in the House.
    These victories are a great reminder of the power Democracy for America members have when we work together to take on old, establishment thinking to elevate a transformative slate of progressive champions.

    In Georgia, DFA members from across the country made calls on DFA Dialer to key counties where we helped drive up turnout, while our Electoral Leaders worked hand-in-hand with the Abrams campaign on the ground — leading to an epic victory.

    These candidates still face tough general election fights ahead. And this summer will be full of new, critical primary challenges for progressive candidates. That’s why we’re going to keep fighting to make sure that states from Georgia to Texas feel the brunt of a “blue wave” this November — and we need your support.

    Pitch in $3 to build DFA’s organizing power in critical states across the country so we can win important races now and in November.

    We’re thrilled with the work that DFA members did in Georgia and Texas. Now, all eyes are turning to the California primary on June 5, where we’re going all in to make the difference for number of amazing progressive candidates.

    Here are a few critical fights we will be involved in over the coming days and weeks:

    Kevin de Leon is mounting an important primary challenge against incumbent centrist Senator Dianne Feinstein. On issues from national security to criminal justice reform and climate change, Kevin better represents the bold, progressive state that California has become, and we’re excited to help him move forward into the top-two runoff in November.
    Katie Porter, an incredible advocate for consumers and working families who worked closely with Elizabeth Warren, is facing a tough primary fight in California’s 45th District. This district is potentially one of the most flippable districts in the country — Trump lost it by 5 points. She has the backing of California Senator Kamala Harris and is running a boldly progressive campaign on issues like corporate accountability and Medicare for All.
    DFA is backing a slate of 5 criminal justice champions running for District Attorney positions across California. The police-sanctioned murder of Stephon Clark in Sacramento made it clear that even in this “blue” state, much work needs to be done when it comes to police accountability and racial justice. Winning these races will be crucial to fixing that.
    DFA members have been making a HUGE difference up and down the ballot so far in 2018. The elections happening in California in two weeks will be pivotal in terms of pushing the Democratic Party to adopt the kind of inclusive, populist message we need to create a “blue wave” in the fall.

    Can you help us lay the groundwork for progressive success in these upcoming primaries — and in November — by chipping in $3 or more today to build DFA’s electoral work?

    Thanks for pitching in. Support from DFA members like you is a critical part of what makes these progressive victories possible.

    – Jim

    Jim Dean, Chair
    Democracy for America


  10. Robert Weissman President, Public Citizen

    May 24, 2018 by admin

    The Ukraine government paid Trump personal lawyer Michael Cohen $400,000 to arrange a meeting with President Trump, according to a breaking news report from the BBC.

    In response, we’ve already leapt into action — amending the complaint we filed earlier with the U.S. Department of Justice about Cohen’s failure to register as a foreign agent.

    Can you make a donation right now to power forward our work to get to the bottom of the Michael Cohen affair and the corruption that pervades this administration?

    Anything you contribute will be matched dollar-for-dollar.

    If the BBC report is accurate, then it is almost certainly the case that Cohen was obligated to register with the Justice Department as a foreign agent.

    Failing to do so is a criminal offense.

    It is important to note that the BBC also reports that Cohen denies the allegation.

    According to the BBC’s report, Ukraine paid Cohen because the country’s lobbyists could get no more than a photo op with Trump for Ukraine President Petro Poroshenko. Afterwards, a meeting between the two presidents was arranged.

    After Trump met with Poroshenko, according to the BBC, Ukraine dropped its investigation into potential wrongdoing by former Trump campaign manager Paul Manafort.

    We filed a complaint with the Justice Department about Cohen two weeks ago, based on his failure to register as a foreign agent when paid by foreign companies — the pharmaceutical manufacturer Novartis and Korea Aerospace Industries.

    In that instance, we said that the known facts suggested Cohen should have registered as a foreign agent.

    Today’s blockbuster news, if accurate, would mean Cohen almost certainly violated the law.

    Our complaint asks the Department of Justice to investigate exactly that question.

    It would be bad enough if this kind of corruption were isolated.

    It is not.

    The Trump administration is corrupt at its core.

    That corruption not only is buying favors and degrading our democracy, it also is shaping policy.

    There’s a direct line from the transactional presidency and the corporate capture of the administration to the rollback of chemical safety standards, a trillion-dollar tax giveaway to megacorporations, the administration’s green light for predatory lenders, and on and on.

    That’s why we are devoting so much effort to confronting this corruption head on.

    But we need your help to power the work.

    Please chip in whatever you can to support our efforts to expose and hold the Trump administration accountable.

    Your donation will be matched dollar-for-dollar.

    Thank you for standing with Public Citizen in standing up to Trump.

    Onward,

    Robert Weissman
    President, Public Citizen